Entry level position my butt

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Daflyone in Chicago, Illinois

86 months ago

How is someone supposed to get experience in Usability when there are no one is willing to hire a recent college grad? I have a degree in usability from DePaul but I've been unsuccessful in landing a usability job. I've been forced to take a helpdesk position because I cant find anything because places like Allsate wont give me a chance.

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Don't fret! in Louisville, Colorado

86 months ago

You keep looking and keep working because that helpdesk experience is actually valuable in your degree field. If you know why people don't like or understand a website or software it will make you better able to create requirements for more intuitive software. Helpdesk is actually a good place to be "from" as it exposes you to all areas of IT and you can demonstrate that you are responsible and can hold down a job.

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seattle in Muskego, Wisconsin

86 months ago

Helpdesk is the best place to start a career in IT. I put my time in for 4 years and the skills learned during my time at Helpdesk has been the most valuable. Just keep learning and letting people know that you want to do Usability stuff and eventually someone will give you a shot. The best part about helpdesk is that you get to meet people you wouldn't normally meet in other jobs.

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nun ur biz in Chicago, Illinois

85 months ago

Daflyone in Chicago, Illinois said: How is someone supposed to get experience in Usability when there are no one is willing to hire a recent college grad? I have a degree in usability from DePaul but I've been unsuccessful in landing a usability job. I've been forced to take a helpdesk position because I cant find anything because places like Allsate wont give me a chance.

Companies are out there for their own self-interest, i.e- they only want you if you can give them profit/service worth three times or more the amount they pay you. That said, hiring then having to train "entry level candiates" and waiting for them to develop does not always help in this cause. Nevertheless, entry level candiates are useful because they are cheap labor now and when they mature after 4 years they are better than bring in someone new with the same 4-year training from another company (they know the company's system already and are ingrained in the culture). So there are entry jobs. However, they are obtained by interns, people with connections/networking, during campus recruiting and other means. Since you evidently have none of things what you can do now is:
1. You may have to update your skills or reinvent yourself. Forget human-computer interaction (only useful in academia and a few companies like Microsoft) and other things you learned in DePaul that may not be used by a lot of companies. Learn C#.NET and/or other hot tools used by a huge number of companies.
2. Go find a career counselor. UIC has a U of I alumni center. DePaul may have an equivalent program and asking it's career center helps.

The helpdesk jobs is great for paying the bills. Still, do reading on your own or go to a training center like New Horizon (www.newhorizons.com) to learn new skills in demand and keep applying.

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DoctorM in Seattle, Washington

69 months ago

Daflyone in Chicago, Illinois said: How is someone supposed to get experience in Usability when there are no one is willing to hire a recent college grad? I have a degree in usability from DePaul but I've been unsuccessful in landing a usability job. I've been forced to take a helpdesk position because I cant find anything because places like Allsate wont give me a chance.

You're probably not going to like this reply... Most hiring managers are looking for UX people who have, at a minimum, an MS degree and 3-5 years experience. The way a recent grad gets a UX job "right out of school" is to have a Ph.D. That's how I, and most of my colleagues got their first UX job.

If you want a UX job in this economy, you'll need to complete at least an MS and to work with your academic advisor to secure an internship or two. Parlay the internship into a contract to hire, and you're on your way... If you want to compete in the open market and can't get an internship foot-in-the-door, you likely will need to complete a Doctorate. Naturally, your mileage may vary.

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